News Column

Funny Ticker Symbols Revisited: New Symbols and Performance

January 23, 2014

Joe Goldman

The FUNY Index is a fabricated, diversified index comprised of 20 stocks and ETFs from the NYSE and NASDAQ, all of which trade under funny or clever ticker symbols. Over the previous year, Equities.com has periodically checked on the performance of funny ticker stocks versus the S&P 500 during the current bull market that began in the middle of November 2012 . For the first time since its inception, five new symbols have been added to the index. They include: 1) Sotheby's ( $BID) 2) Claymore/Clear Global Timber Index ( $CUT) 3) Brinker International ( $EAT ) 4) First Trust Global Wind Energy ( $FAN) 5) Guggenheim Solar ETF ( $TAN) Despite the new additions and rapidly changing global economic and market conditions, the FUNY Index dramatically outperformed the S&P 500 once again. With exposure to virtually all industries and exceptional, triple-digit performances from BioTelemetry ( $BEAT) , Southwest Airlines ( $LUV ), Papa John's ( $PZZA ), and Guggenheim Solar ETF ( $TAN ), the FUNY Index nearly doubled the S&P's return with an incredible 70.71 percent average return in only 14 months. Here's a breakdown of the FUNY Index's performance during this timeframe. A * symbol denotes a new addition to the index. However, this data is slightly flawed. The performance of the index was tracked during one of the most tremendous bull markets in history. With only 20 stocks and market caps on the small to medium side, the index may be more susceptible to cyclical trends and better performance during periods of economic growth. Luck is also a factor, as a few triple-digit gainers played a huge role in overall performance. Therefore, it is also important to analyze the index during a period of market underperformance. During the previous month, earnings concerns and a slowdown in China have emerged. Therefore, the previous month has brought forth significantly different market conditions. Here is how the FUNY Index has fared. The FUNY Index once again outperformed the S&P 500 by a relatively substantial margin in the midst of a flat stock market. With consistent outperformance, can we infer that there is something special about these companies? Probably not - investing in a company based on a ticker is like betting on a sports team based on their color scheme. However, investors can certainly learn from the FUNY Index. A balanced, well-diversified portfolio can help alleviate risk and is paramount to the strength of a portfolio. Although some of the stocks in the index traded in the red, the portfolio thrived because it had exposure to almost all industries, many of which are undergoing secular growth. A few outperformers from these industries can carry an entire portfolio. Therefore, it could be a good idea for investors to speculate on one or two stocks, but always in combination with diversification.


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Source: Equities.com


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